National Poetry Month – Day 8

van-zyverden-flo bleeding hearts


Couldn’t do this blog for some days… out of town.  Here is a poem from my 2007 book Scattered Showers in a Clear Sky:

Name Your Poison


Apple morsel

choked Snow White

Belladonna, called the witch.


Bloodroot floods the forest,

cousin to monkshood, Jack in the Pulpit,

companion to crowfoot,

dogbane, devils’trumpet,

deadly orchestra.


Back home,

the medicine cabinet

carries Dilantin, Digitalis,



In the kitchen,

Warm wood cabinet under the sink

hides Drano, lye, bleach.


In the far corner of the basement

grey peeling shelf

supports arsenic, strychnine, malathion.


Sun flecked garden

flaunts Colchium, Lobelia;

Far corner of the back yard

shades Lily of the Valley, Bleeding Heart, Larkspur.


Yellow stains skin

heartbeat stutters ,starved of air,

Muscles freeze, tongue burns

Fierce convulsions, pressure plummets.


Thick blue glass bottle glints

on the counter

in an old apothecary shop.

We want it to kill a rat,

said the youngest of the three revelers.


Published by ahiggins2013

poet, birder, senior citizen, cancer survivor, Catholic sister. Eight books of poetry published: At the Year’s Elbow, Mellen Poetry Press 2000; Scattered Showers in a Clear Sky, Plain View Press 2007; chapbooks: Pick It Up and Read, Finishing Line Press 2008, How the Hand Behaves, Finishing Line Press 2009, Digging for God, Wipf and Stock 2010, Vexed Questions, Aldrich Press 2013, Reconnaissance, Texture Press 2014, and Life List, Finishing Line Press, 2015.

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